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Aversano & Strozzi Families

It was a snowy day in ‘36 when Alexander Aversano, BS ‘36, CERT ‘35, accepted an offer to go home with Paul Strozzi, CERT ‘37, his Alpha Phi Delta fraternity brother. It was then that he met his soon-to-be wife, Paul’s sister, Margherita. Aversano graduated from the School of Pharmacy and the couple married a year later, spending the early years of their marriage running their pharmacy on Niagara Street in Buffalo. Their marriage united two UB families.

On the Strozzi side of the equation, the first was Margherita’s father, Frank Strozzi, CERT ’04, pharmacy school graduate, who opened his own pharmacy on Busti Avenue in Buffalo. Frank’s brother Michael Strozzi, CERT ‘12, also graduated from the School of Pharmacy. Soon after, he opened his own drugstore on Niagara Street, a few miles from where his niece and her husband would set up shop more than two decades later. The third was Frank’s son, Paul.

On the Aversano side of the aisle, Alexander was a star student athlete while studying pharmacy, serving as the football team’s quarterback during the ’30s and earning membership in the UB hall of fame. Alexander helped put his brother, Sam Aversano, MD ‘49, through medical school at UB. Sam later married Mary Aversano, BS ‘50. Alexander and Margherita had three children, all of whom learned from their parents about the importance of education.

Alexander established the Aversano-Strozzi Scholarship at UB in 1980 to honor Margherita following her death from cancer at age 52. He designated that it be given to pharmacy students with financial need. Alexander and Margherita’s children, Camille Aversano Passarella, ED.B. ’61, and Paul Aversano, have continued giving to the scholarship after their parents’ passing, in order to help more pharmacy students and to honor their parents’ memory.